Home>Discussions>PAINTING & FINISHING>Oil based trim was painted with latex paint and is peeling
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Oil based trim was painted with latex paint and is peeling

We recently purchased a home and found out approximately five months later that the interior trim had been painted with latex paint over oil based paint that was not prepped properly prior to painting. As shown in the attached picture, the paint is starting to peel off on a rather random basis around the house. Sanity is at risk as we are up against 28 doors, 21 window stills, 4 bathroom vanities, and enough crown and floor molding to boggle the mind on how to fix this problem. Any suggestions on how to fix this would be greatly appreciated. :confused:

Re: Oil based trim was painted with latex paint and is peeling


I wish I could tell you of some silver bullet that would cure your problem, but unfortunately I know of none.

The paint is obviously very poorly adhered to the paint underneath. To best extent possible, you have to remove the paint that is peeling. Any further coats of paint would only be adhered as well as the failing paint underneath.Often scraping the paint will finish breaking the bond. Rather than using a pull sc****r, try baring down on the surface with a sharp putty knife. Do not push the blade, but rather hold it at an angle to the surface and pull it along the surface. Often this pressure will pop the failing paint.

You might also try "shocking" the paint with a heat gun. The idea is to rapidly heat the failing coat of paint so that it expands and breaks its bond to the paint underneath. You do not want to heat the paint to the point that all the paint starts to lift from the wood!

Chemical strippers would creat a real mess. I would sooner re-trim my house than go through that mess!

After you get the failed paint off, start over with a complete prime job with either an oil or acrylic primer. Oil primer can be top coated with either oil or acrylic paint. This old contractor still has a bias toward oil paints on fine woodwork.

Re: Oil based trim was painted with latex paint and is peeling

Thank you for your response. This has been very challenging as you can imagine. Current plan is experiment with your suggestions now that we are through with the Thanksgiving Holiday and take on after Christmas. Will keep you posted. Once again thank you.

Re: Oil based trim was painted with latex paint and is peeling

Uffda! What a situation!!

>>> IMO...I think "Painting-to-sell" should be outlawed!

* People just do the crappiest jobs to get a color up...which looks fine...for a while...
* Therefore the buyers are stuck with a big headache to undo a quick "lipstick on a pig" kinda job!
(Ooops! Sarah Palin must've been channeling thru me there...!)

Ordjen has a point...in that you may be better-off, TIME AND $$$-WISE, to just rip it down, and re-trim.
* Usually MUCH faster, and you can get the materials YOU want.
* Light sanding for prep, use a good primer, and 2 coats of a TOP-quality Latex in a higher-sheen for trims.
* Plus...there is a DEFINITE therapudic personal satisfaction in re-doing stuff like this yourself, because your own hands have created a big change!
* Part of the reason is the "By-the-time-you've-stripped.....", you could've ripped down the old, prepped new stuff, and installed. WITHOUT going thru the headache & time & Motrin...if the old stuff was re-done.
* You would also have the option of going back to a "Stained Wood" look.

One idea is to maybe try this approach in the room that gets the most "focus", like your main living-room.


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